Like us, many of our FYL members try their hand at online memberships for freedom from a dead-end job, for a work-life balance, or even as a side-hustle.
But, in tough times online memberships can be a lifeline.
This doesn’t just apply to trying to stay afloat during the uncertainty of COVID-19.
We’ve seen this first-hand not only in our own lives, but for our friend and FYL member Jennifer Dixon.
The ‘Lowdown’ on Jennifer Dixon:
- Quit her 9-5 corporate job
- Opened her own yoga studio, with her own online monthly memberships
- To see her memberships at work, visit her website here: http://www.thriveyogaandwellness.com/thrive-online/
What You’ll Learn:
- How to serve + build your online community (11:38)
- Be prepared for the unexpected (12:00)
- Turn physical membership into sustainable online memberships (13:00)
- Acknowledge your God-Given talents (16:05)
- Take advantage of the opportunities at hand, to move forward (24:10)
- Keep your online business steady (26:20)
- How to monetize your multi-faceted online presence (30:25)
- Connect + influence your audience (31:46)
- Use testimonials (32:00)
- Use feedback to launch your business to the next level (34:18)
- Let your members get to know you (36:27)
- Consolidate your gains (37:21)
- Market, market, market! (39:56)
- Stop focusing on what’s happening now (42:58)
- Use local news to your advantage (43:42)
Here in 2020, we are seeing the importance of online memberships more than ever.
Everything has been making its way online for a long time now, with COVID-19 coming from out of nowhere, that only sped the process up. We have seen how much it literally paid to have an established online community. Grocery stores, clothing stores, fitness studios, even doctors offices and pharmacies are all using the tools they had in place to virtually continue their services.
If you have an inkling of a desire for freedom, peace of mind, and sustainability, there is no time like today to start your own online memberships.
When your brick + mortar is closed, online business will not!
We do not know what tomorrow holds. At the beginning of the year, who would have thought that nearly everything would be closed down for a global pandemic? If you had known, you would have been prepared ahead of time. Unfortunately, we have to come to grips with the reality that we have to expect every possibility. Because, as we’ve seen, storms whether literal or spiritual, usually hit at the same time.
But, what businesses were able to stay open? The ones with no physical doors to shut. This is why having a multi-faceted online presence is essential.
Going back to Jennifer, the only thing she needed to keep her studio open was the internet and her passion to help others through yoga. That’s it.
You already have the God-Given talents that it takes to be successful. All you need is 1) internet access, 2) an idea (which we can help you with), 3) the desire for freedom and peace of mind, by using those talents virtually.
Online memberships can sustain existing businesses.
Let’s use Jennifer as an example here: 1) she had monthly memberships to her physical yoga studio 2) she found a way to keep her business alive by utilizing those memberships online. It was literally as simple as it sounds. Even after Tennessee’s Governor closed non-essential businesses because of COVID-19 Jennifer is still keeping your studio open by driving online memberships.
What about a natural disaster? We touched on this in our interview with Jennifer. All the businesses around her were destroyed by tornadoes. Thankfully, hers was okay. But, what if it hadn’t been? Think about that. It is an ugly but oh so real reality. How many times have you watched your local news to see businesses crippled by wind damage, fire, flooding, hail, tornadoes, earthquakes, you name it. No matter where you live, the possibility of one, if not all of these exist. But, if it were to happen, you could always turn to your virtual business.
Regardless of what type of memberships you offer, you can turn physical memberships into online ones that will sustain your brick + mortar business.
Online memberships allow you to continue serving + building your community.
Not only will you keep your current customers, but appeal to way more than those you can see face-to-face. In fact, through her online memberships, Jennifer’s market is now bigger than before, because she is reaching a target audience that does not have to live in Chattanooga.
Anytime a business has loyal customers, they become friends and even sort-of like family. This is your community. One of Jennifer’s biggest issues was realizing that these people depend on her, just as much as she depends upon them. After listening to her story of the last few weeks, that was probably what made her the most grateful for that online footing for that relationship to continue.
However, these new people in her circle that may be on the other side of the country, are growing that community. Jennifer would never have reached people in other states, or even other countries, had she not opened that line of communication.
Like Shane said, referring to Esther from the Bible, maybe this moment is why He gave Jennifer her talents. Maybe this is why Jennifer had to go through both those physical and spiritual storms. Could it be that this is why she found the Flip Your Life community? So that she can use those God-Given talents to fulfill her desire to serve those people?
We all go through tough times, but you can and will have the ability to continue building your community to bring peace of mind to both you and those that count on you, through online memberships.
The takeaway from this episode is: there has never been a time where we have relied on our online presence more.
We are living in unprecedented times. Even when we are able to get back to our ‘new normal,’ now our eyes are open. We see just how important it is to allow your online presence to sustain your livelihood, supplement your income, or to rely solely on your online communities. All of course, driven by online memberships.
Hey y’all. On today’s show we discuss how Jennifer’s online membership saved her brick and mortar.
Welcome to the Flipped Lifestyle Podcast, where life always comes before work. We’re your hosts, Shane and Jocelyn Sams. We’re a real family that figured out how to make our entire living online. Now, we help other families do the same. Are you ready to flip your life? All right, let’s get started. What is going on everybody? Welcome back to the Flipped Lifestyle Podcast. It is great to be back with you again today. Super excited to talk to another member of the Flip Your Life Community. Our guest today is Jennifer Dixon. Hey Jennifer. How are you doing?
Hey guys, doing well. Thanks for having me.
Welcome back Jennifer. We’re excited to talk to you today about a lot of different things actually, but we will start out with what’s been happening with as far as just the world’s events right now and see how they are affecting everyone.
So basically we’re recording this under lockdown. We are actually recording this during the Coronavirus pandemic, during the COVID-19 outbreak. Most States are being shut down right now. Jocelyn and I are in Kentucky. We are under a complete lockdown. Most businesses are closed, especially all the brick and mortar customer facing businesses where people can gather in crowds like gyms and things like that. I know Jennifer is in Chattanooga, where everything’s shut down, down there. So if you’re listening to this later when the country opens up, that’s what’s happening right now.
So Jennifer, you have a really interesting story of how your online business made a tremendous impact on your brick and mortar business. So tell us a little bit about you and your background first. Tell us what you do, do in the real world and then tell us a little bit about how it affected your business when the Corona virus started and all of the State government started shutting down businesses like your studio.
Sure, sure. So last year, it was almost a year ago, right guys that you guys had me on? You’ve been helping me grow my online membership. I have a yoga studio in Chattanooga, Tennessee. I guess about… is this year two or three? I can’t remember. I’ve been with you guys for at least two years, maybe three years. You guys have been helping me and helping me put the stuff in place to build an online membership. So I had the platform, I’ve been slowly but surely like one video a week uploading into my membership, a video being my type of yoga, which is very physical base. I have a hurt back so I can’t do the running and all the other crazy stuff I used to.
So I found yoga and I figured if I liked this kind of yoga, everybody’s, well, maybe not everybody but at least a hundred or a thousand people will like my kind of style. So I was creating the membership. This year, the COVID-19 crisis hit us and I could tell a difference. I could tell a difference in the studio actually before March. I started noticing the numbers, because this is a cyclical business. Fitness is very cyclical.
So, you’ve got a yoga studio, it’s like a gym. You’ve got a bunch of people that join, you’ve got instructors that you pay for classes, you’ve got dozens of people coming in and doing these high intensity yoga, Jennifer Dixon style yoga classes and so-
Not all of them are my style.
That’s right. That’s right. That’s right. I don’t think anyone… there’s not many people that can handle your style, you know what I’m saying? Because you’re killing it. So basically at this point, if the government closes you, then you don’t make money, all right? Because the people can’t come in to do yoga classes, correct?
Correct. In fact, two weeks before we closed down, another competitor closed down, just completely closed down. The week before-
Like out of business?
Oh, I see. We’re shutting it down ourselves.
Before we were told to. Then the week before we did, the other… there’s like three main, three and a half main studios in town and we’re one of them and I waited until I was told to close down, whereas everybody else preemptively closed down. While they were closing down because of you guys, you guys have helped me get this membership. I had the membership already, I had all of the equipment in place. I started streaming a select amount of my classes because I noticed that people were self quarantining and I wanted to keep… my studio model is very much membership based. So that’s why I love you guys because I feel like the class pass is the kiss of death for gyms, like it just is. You get a whole bunch of money right here and there and then people have XYZ and sometimes there’s no cancellations, right?
So you have this accounts receivable, open-end accounts receivable and no more money coming in. So I have relied heavily on promoting monthly memberships, which is again why I… what you guys teach resonated with me. So, I had a good membership base inside the studio. I noticed they were a lot of self quarantining so I started streaming classes, not the full schedule, but several of the classes the week before we closed. So we got closed down March 19th, 2020 for whenever this podcast and it was… the night before I had already talked to my main desk girls that were helping me and I was like, I’m pretty sure we’re going to be closed down in the next few days. I don’t know how many hours we’ll have, but we’re going to have some work for you.
I knew it was coming, you know what I mean? So, Thursday morning we had a class going on. It was our 10 o’clock class, the Mayor emailed the notice that we had to be closed. So I let that class finish and I’m going to try really hard not to get emotional. This has been, especially in light of what just happened a few days ago, very emotional.
Let me tell you something. Me and Jennifer were talking about this the other day on a Zoom call and we both started just bawling and crying in front of… so I’m probably going to get emotional, so don’t worry, I’ll out cry you.
Jennifer (06:12): Okay.
Shane (06:12): It will be okay.
I’ve been on the verge of tears basically for the past month. So during that class, the Mayor closed us down and I started writing an email to my clients to let them know that the studio, the business, the brick and mortar where they came to practice was going to be closing but we would still be offering our entire membership, our entire lineup, our entire class schedule, if you will, we’ll be offering that remotely via Zoom because I’d already been doing that. I’d already had my higher end membership where it was one on one, something that you guys had suggested at Flip Your Life live. I’d already been putting those frameworks in place, working with people on Zoom, having the infrastructure in place. So, I was very purposeful and I’m an open book. I was very honest in the email and I put a picture of my family right in the very front because it is a family owned business.
My husband is in there once or twice a week when we’re open. He’s helping me so I can be home working on the online stuff. My kids come into the studio. This isn’t just a side hustle for me and a lot of yoga studios are, they’re just like pet projects. This is our livelihood. I was just very real about how scary it was. That class ended at 11:00. The very next class was streamed live, we just didn’t have… the teacher came into the studio because at that point the teachers could still come in. So the teacher just came in, I hooked her up to the good mic because again we had the equipment and we didn’t miss any time. Whereas the rest of the studios here in town, they were just stuck in the water.
They talked about pausing their memberships and all that kind of stuff. In my email I was very pointed, I said please don’t pause your membership. You still have access to the same great teachers, the same schedule. In fact, now that we’re not limited to a classroom size, we can add to the schedule and we can add classes. I was just very pointed about not canceling their membership and I was very lucky and honestly, within 30 minutes of that email going out, I got emails from clients that I was shocked, I was sure that they were going to cancel, I was sure they were going to cancel and I got emails from clients saying, we’re all in this together, we’re with you, we’re with you. I just… like, I’m getting teary thinking about it.
Over the course of the last month, I have lost some clients, some of them were shockers and they hurt a lot because they were clients that, I know that they’re paying me and I know I’m providing a service, but they were… to me, they were friends and we recently had a tornado that ripped through our area and we can talk about that if you want to. Nothing but the grace of God saved my business. These are clients that I would be over there taking trees out of their yards and that hurt. The first week I spent a lot of time crying because these are people that got my kids presents and that hurt a lot. But that’s why I was focused more than ever to keep providing the same level of service. I wasn’t going to stop the classes, I wasn’t going to change the schedule, if anything, if I could amp it up some way.
So Judson and I, the very night that we closed, I’m not camera shy at all, my parents have always made fun of me and called me a ham. So, I got home, I was drained, he was drained because he’s dealing with me, my husband is a saint. He’s a saint. God gave him to me for a reason, I guess and so that night it was like 9:30 at night and I said, “Honey, we need to go live.” He was like, “Huh?” He doesn’t get on a camera. He’s like, Dolly Parton’s husband, you’ve never seen him on camera and it’s always Dolly in the front singing. I kind of joke and say, “We’re like Dolly Parton and her husband,” like you don’t even really know who Dolly Parton’s husband’s name is, right? But he… you know, he’s behind the strings. So, I made him get on the camera with me and he was so frustrated. We just went live and we were real and I cried and he was patting me trying not to cry.
Since then, we’ve gone live in our group every single night as a way to build community, to sustain community, to make sure everybody still sees that we’re here, even though they can’t come to the studio. They know that Judson and I are working our tails off to continue to provide the service to them and we’re grateful that they have stayed with us. For the most part, most people have stayed. I think when we first chatted, I’d only lost like five or six members and now I’m up to I think 11, but still, that’s negligible, negligible.
Well, I mean I bet you that most gyms who don’t… everything you just said was amazing and I’m crying right now. I don’t know if you… I’ve got the touch up on on Zoom so my face looks better and it’s high and it’s kind of blending out my tears. You know what I mean? But, it’s just amazing because everything you said is exactly what we always talk about a membership. It’s like, okay, we have to serve them. How do you serve them? It’s either with a content path or like your yoga studio, that’s your content path. Then you’re going live to provide community, you’re showing up and leading, everybody’s freaking scared. Some of those people will be back, they just… maybe they lost their job, who knows? You know what I mean?
Jennifer (11:58): Exactly.
But like imagine if you hadn’t have had the online component and you weren’t working on this
membership, you would have been stuck just like every other gym, every other studio.
Well, I think this has really been sneaking up on most people, most people weren’t prepared. There are a lot of people out there who just had to close their doors. Like our gym that we go to, it is locally owned and they’re just not charging anyone.
Yeah they had to turn off their… and this is a huge gym, we’re talking probably… this is a massive like 40,000 square foot facility.
It has a big pool and-
I mean it’s probably a 30 to $40,000 a month gym membership and it probably costs 10,000 to keep the doors open.
Jocelyn (12:40): If not more.
But they’re stuck. They’re done. They’re closed. You said something that I want to call you out on there, you said we were really lucky and we can talk about that with the COVID-19, with the tornado, which I do want to talk about because it’s… this story, it gets more insane as we go but you weren’t lucky. You made choices and you were prepared and I want to say something to you, you’ve been building this membership and your membership itself online has not took off yet.
The way that you would like it to.
The way you would like it to but, you kept going. You never quit. You kept building, you kept learning. I remember Jennifer, me and you had a conversation about going live and well, I went back and forth with you so much about, well, I don’t have the right lighting and I don’t have the right room, what if no one hears me on the microphone? I’m like, just do yoga in front of your phone. Come on, you’ve got to start somewhere. You’ll figure all that out.
Stop making this so hard.
Yeah. I remember these conversations with you and you did figure it out. You didn’t let the technology beat you. You didn’t do it. Right now, you’ve got great lighting, you’re on camera, I can hear you. I watch your videos, we’re Facebook friends, I see you all the time doing yoga. I love your videos, they’re hilarious and they’re awesome and they’re fun but like two years ago, if you could have told me, oh, yeah man, Jennifer’s going to stick with it, she’s going to go through it, when you first started, I’d be like, oh, I don’t know man, she’s really like, I can’t do this. But you found a way and when you needed it, it wasn’t like what you thought, but it was exactly what had to happen. You know what I’m saying?
You’re right. It was not at all like what I thought, it was not at all. What we did when we did close down is I opened up the online membership to all of my current members because before it was just for the unlimited members. So I opened it up to everybody as an incentive to keep them. I also opened it up to my class pass holders. The members had overwhelmingly taken advantage of it, the class pass, not as much. It was the infrastructure that I know was very unusual, at least in my area. It was the planning, the very strategic, continuing that grind, like you said that enabled me to be like, all right, the writing’s on the wall, we’re about to have to close down, I can’t lose this membership money but let’s do it.
I wouldn’t be able to do it if it wasn’t for my team. I have like 27, I believe teachers and almost every single one of them has been like, what do you need? What do you need? How can I help you? I’m talking like everybody from the 20-something-year-old to the 70-something-year-old, they’re all learning the technology. They’re all like, how can we help? We want to keep this studio here.
You’re teaching them the technology, right? You’re telling them like, you Zoom, do this, do-
Jennifer (15:30): Yeah.
It’s you leading this effort and it makes me so… it makes me laugh because I remember that conversation one day where you go, “I don’t even know how to turn the camera on or how to do the microphone.” And now, you have put the effort in to be the leader.
And you’re teaching other people.
You’re teaching other people in your studio how to do this and you basically created a virtual membership for all of your actual physical brick and mortar yoga members. That’s amazing. Jennifer (15:59):
We turned it on like that. Yeah, it was not how I plan, but what’s that saying? Man makes plans and God laughs.
Shane (16:09): Yes.
Yes, exactly. He was preparing you for something that you didn’t even imagine.
But I would even say there’s more something to that. In the Bible there’s a story about Esther, who was a Jew and that the King fell in love with her and married her, but the King was not a Jew, but the people we’re starving, something bad was going on, everything was happening and her uncle, I think it was her uncle, said to her, maybe this is why God made you queen. Maybe this is why your path led to this place was because he knew this was going to happen. Maybe in some weird way like yes it is… you want to expand, it is you want to be successful, but like maybe that grind over the past couple years is because… this isn’t a surprise to God, what’s happening in this world right now. It’s happened before. It’ll happen again and it’s happening now.
Maybe he knew that not only would you need to save your business, but you would need to lead all of these people and you would need to be in houses with people when they couldn’t leave their house so that they could still stay healthy, they could still stay fit, they could still be where they are and not be alone. God, I mean, it’s a great day for those people every day when they get to log in to one of these classes and they’ve been alone all day and they can’t get within six feet of anybody and they’re having fun and they’re still getting to do at least their yoga practice.
They are getting some normal back.
Shane (17:33): Yeah.
It’s almost like I used to go to yoga on Tuesday night, I can still go to yoga on Tuesday night. It’s not
exactly the same, but I’m still there.
If you hadn’t have chosen to grind and learn what you had to learn to become the leader then you wouldn’t be leading these people right now. So it’s just amazing. It’s just an incredible story of perseverance. One, I know that five years from now you’re going to look back at this moment as scary and hard as it is and realize that that was the turning point in your online game because it’s going to make something big happen. You now know you can lead hundreds of people in a community, right? Online, it’s just finding those people and the sky is the limit now. This too shall pass, this is all going to end eventually but your core structure of your business is intact. Your DNA as a business is still there and your membership lives and breathes online now. Your yoga studio is out there for the whole world and people will learn about it.
Jennifer (18:29): That’s what I hope.
Amazing. Tell me… now, so Coronavirus pandemic and then a tornado hit like 10 feet from your studio?
Yes, so it actually… the tornado wasn’t here, but we got really strong winds even here and so people
were joking about a Coronavirus bingo card. I think that we have at least three squares-
It’s an apocalypse bingo card.
Jennifer (18:49): Yeah, exactly.
Like you got pandemic, you got tornadoes, locust-
Jennifer (18:52): Power outage.
You know, there’s actually a locust swarm in Africa taking over all of East Africa right now? What is going on?
It snowed in April, that doesn’t happen in Kentucky. It snowed in April.
Yeah, right. So, all right, so you finally stabilized. You’re like, okay, my business didn’t quit, we’re making
pretty much the same money-
Jennifer (19:10): Everything is going great.
Everything is going smooth. Then what’s that over the hill? Like what happened?
Bingo. We had a tornado, an E3 tornado run through our town, Easter night. We had just finished our nightly Thrive Yoga Group check-in. Judson and I had… we were chatting everybody, I mean we were worried about the storm because the news was obviously, it was like, oh, it’s a storm possibility, but we get like strong storm warnings all the time where we are and I noticed my husband was really worried, but I’m just convinced that I had… like God just sent His peace on me through all this because I’ve melted down so many times. Sunday night we had a tornado come through our area, thank God nothing happened to our house. The studio, it made national news a hundred and not even 150 feet from the studio, two businesses were completely leveled and an auto parts store, which was, if you’re looking out my front door to the left, my husband could throw a rock that far, I can’t because I throw like a girl. To the right was a barbecue joint connected to a Goodwill, completely gone, completely gone, just rubble.
It was in the middle of the night and my husband, I’m sure would be just like the Shane, he’s like, I’m going, I’m going, I’m going because we heard that a tornado might’ve been in East Brainerd and I was like, no, no, no. At like 1:30 or so he tried to go and he couldn’t get there. The trees were down, the power was out. It was still raining but the tornado had passed. So he came back and then about 2:00, 2:30 somebody… my phone was going crazy that night. I was texting, all of my teachers that I knew were in East Brainerd to make sure they were okay because if my teachers weren’t okay, we were going to get up. I didn’t know how, but we were going to get them. All of my teachers, thank God we’re okay. A couple of them did sustain a lot of damage to their homes. We got a text message at 2:00 or 2:30 saying the studio was gone.
Oh, so you thought it had got hit? At 2:30 in the morning you were like, everything’s gone in this area,
your studio is destroyed. So you actually thought this happened, right?
Yup. We got multiple, multiple, even on the news they were like the auto parts store is gone, all the buildings around it are gone. So Judson’s like, that’s it, I’m going, you can’t… I’m not staying here, you can’t make me stay. We put all the babies in the bed with me and he’s like, you stay here and he knows the area a lot better than me so he got there with different back roads or whatever and he called me, he was like, “Jennifer, your building’s fine. We lost a couple of windows. Our smaller room is going to be a loss from a yoga perspective because the glass blew in everywhere and we have special flooring, special equipment.” So that’s a loss but just 150 feet on one side, 200 on the other, the buildings were gone. The next morning when we went, and this is the part that I just… that’s why I’m convinced that there’s a reason why we’re here like you said, such a time as this, that story of Esther has been big. I’ve been reading it and studied it and like, God, what is this time?
When we got there at 9:30, on both sides of my building, there’s… I guess on the west side buildings completely just, they are just gone. On the east side, not even 50 feet away from me, roofs completely gone, just off, holes in the roof. Outside of my door, like 15 feet, a tree is uprooted, just completely uprooted. If you look at an aerial shot of my building and this is where I start to feel guilty like, why was I so lucky? An aerial shot of my building, my unit is the only one that still has a roof on it. The units on the far side, there’s five units, they had standing water in theirs and if there would have been standing water in my unit, that would have been… all of my floor, all of the equipment would have been…
It was a miracle. That’s all I can say. I hate saying it’s a miracle because I have two teachers that have so much damage and there’s so many people that lost entire homes. So, how did I get so lucky? I have no idea. But if you look at an aerial shot of my building, mine is the only one with the roof mostly intact. We had some water come in. My brother-in-law is a roofer, so he’s going over there and patching it today because we’re expecting rain so no more water damage comes in from the roof. But I’m convinced that God put himself an angel right there and was like, y’all… either [inaudible 00:24:08], this business has a point and I don’t know what it is but-
But look at all the people that you lead and take care of and you had to survive it because without you all those teachers don’t have a place to teach, all those members don’t have comfort in their homes right now. Don’t feel guilty, just take advantage of the opportunity that you’ve been given to move forward. You know what I’m saying? I know right now, like hundreds, if not thousands of people around the country can’t go to their yoga studio and would love to tune into your classes. You have this amazing opportunity and… take advantage is not the right word, I don’t mean like that, I mean, just use it. That’s what you’re supposed to do. Don’t freeze, don’t feel guilty, go and just serve and do the things that you’re already doing and it will all be worth it. It will all be… it’ll be exactly what you were supposed to do, anyway.
There was a reason for it. There’s a reason for everything, so don’t feel guilty about it, just be thankful
Jennifer (25:12): Very thankful.
Yeah, keep moving forward-
You’re going to become and I know I’m going to put a lot of weight on you here, right? But you’re going to be… you’re already the anchor for your entire yoga community. You, you are the anchor. You’re what’s holding them together. It’s not that they’re just choosing to stay and they like yoga, it’s you. You’re the reason that they’re having happiness right now and you are now going to become the anchor in the rebuilding of that area. Your studio is going to be the anchor that brings people back to that area when it rebuilds, you just have to do that. Do you know what I mean?
Man, I’ll tell you what, you’ve been through the ringer girl. I mean it’s been a rough March and April down there but I just want to let you know we’re proud of you so much. To see what you’ve accomplished and what you’ve done and what I know you’re going to do next, it’s like we’re proud of you, we’re praying for you. I believe those people are very lucky to have you because a lot of gym owners, a lot of communities don’t have a Jennifer Dixon right now and they really need them. So, you should be proud of yourself too.
Thank you. I appreciate it.
Yeah, all right now, hold on now. Okay, well let’s talk about next because we’ve already talked about what just happened and it’s been chaos, okay? But you now know how to lead hundreds of members in an online yoga studio.
And things have been happening. I know that just from reading your posts in the community and just from talking to you personally that things are happening as far as your online business goes. Can you talk about that just a little bit?
Yeah, we have… as part of the COVID crisis and I recognize that people’s lives have been uprooted and people have lost jobs, we have what? Over 30 classes every single week that they’re all being recorded on Zoom, the better recordings because not all of the recordings are awesome. We’re saving them all and they’re all going into the membership but the better of them we are releasing. It was just going to be for a week because we also do a vlog, which is now a podcast so that was going to be Monday through Friday, I was going to release content.
So, as of last night I just was like, we’ve scheduled out through the end of July now with content and I still have a backlog of things I have to edit so now we’re just going to do one a day. We recently went… before the COVID crisis, I’ve been building that [inaudible 00:27:37] YouTube channel. Oh my God, YouTube, it drives me bananas. I’ve been putting stuff out there so much for years now and before the COVID crisis we were hovering around 330. I was all excited, we got to 330 subscribers and was it last week? Days are all running together, one of my teachers who was furloughed, who’s been an angel has offered… has started helping me to edit the videos, get me caught up because I was just at my wit’s end. I mean, that’s a lot of content to edit and fix and that’s only so much to me.
She was, “Jennifer, did you realize that we had 485 subscribers?” I was like, “What? What? No, no way.” Because the last that I looked because I’d just been throwing stuff up there and just publishing, I hadn’t been… when you get your nose down and you just work, it’s sometimes like the hound dog, you don’t see everything going on around you, I’m just going for whatever it is. I was like, “What?” She goes, “You should do a post to try to get to 500 today.” She’s like, “I know you’re busy. I know you’re busy.” At the time it was humorous timing because I was scheduling out posts and I was like, “Oh no big deal.” So, I did and that day we got to 530 subscribers on YouTube, woo hoo.
Shane (28:57): That’s awesome.
Jocelyn (28:58): Yeah, that’s amazing.
So, I’m very excited. I’m very excited about that because that’s… for those of you that don’t know the YouTube I guess environment, you have to have a thousand subscribers in order to monetize your channel. Something that we got before all this happened, something that’s been amazing about our YouTube channel is, people get very excited if they’ve got like a three minute average watch time or a five minute. We had… with just 300 people we had every, month well over 6,000 watch hours.
Shane (29:31): Wow.
Which meant, we don’t have many subscribers but we have a-
But people are watching it. Yes.
Exactly. Almost all of our videos have amazing watch time, even now, even though we’re cranking out so many. I believe it’s because we have good content. Like no, the microphones aren’t the best on Zoom and no, my lighting even now I can see… I’m learning how to make it better, but for good stuff people will hang around and they’ll watch.
Shane (30:00): That’s right.
… and they’ll listen. We were able to get a personalized… what is that? A personalized channel, I guess a month before we got closed down because our watch hours were just so great. We were able… so now the YouTube channel is Thrive Yoga and Wellness instead of XYZ one, three whatever, we have our own personal channel and we were able to do that before a thousand subscribers. I thought that was a huge success.
That’s a huge success. I know you have to wait for monetization on your YouTube channel, but you can monetize your online membership. Are you promoting it on there, on every video? Are you promoting what you do online?
We are. When the COVID crisis hit, I also started putting like a, if you want to submit a love donation, you can do that via PayPal. For those that are finding us because we do have… if 50 people watch it, half of them or maybe a little bit more subscribers, the rest are people finding us.
Shane (30:56): Yes.
So, I’m adding… Every video I try to point them to Thrive Online, which is our membership and then since the COVID crisis has happened, I’ve been also putting in a sentence like, if you’d like to do a love donation you can do that here to help us continue to pay the rent or to continue to pay for fixed costs while we’re closed. So we are-
Or even putting more videos on YouTube to serve you. You know what I mean? That’s why you… that
costs money too, right?
I need to phrase it like that. I think I said, if you love this content and would like to ensure that we can
continue providing it.
Shane (31:32): Yes, exactly.
Jocelyn (31:32): Yes.
I’ve said stuff and I try not to say the exact same thing every now and then, but here lately there’s just
been so much, it’s like control C, control V-
Shane (31:43): Yeah, exactly. Yeah.
… for certain things because it’s just been a lot.
Have you guys been posting any personalized videos like a day in the life of Jennifer or like a couple of things about me, maybe do some of your other instructors, like instructor of the week, that type thing? I think some of that get to know you stuff can be really powerful.
Also, too like, you now have dozens and dozens and dozens of people who have taken your online courses. You know what I’m saying? Those members in the brick and mortar business are now members of your online community. In fact, this is probably going to continue I would say, you doing your online classes for people that can’t come to the studio, not all of them. Afterwards, I think it might be a great value add just to live in your membership because like, what if I’m on the road and I’m on a business trip but man, I miss my yoga studio.
Or maybe you have a tier..
Shane (32:29): ‘I miss Jennifer,’ you know?
You have a live only or you have a live plus-
Yeah, like $10 more a month and you get all the live classes too. But have you started reaching out and getting testimonials about the online component only for your marketing?
I haven’t. That’s not a bad idea. We have some comments because with Kajabi, I know you guys like Kajabi, inside Kajabi people can leave comments and we’ve gotten lots. I shouldn’t say lots, a handful of comments. Most people aren’t commenting but I can definitely add that to my list.
She’s reaching for a notebook right now. We’re on camera. If you’re not watching it but we air these on YouTube too if you want to go check out our YouTube channel, flippedlifestyle.com/youtube and you’ll be able to go to our YouTube channel and check the video of this out. But you have to ask for testimonials. The other day I was making a new sales page for my Membership Master’s Newsletter and I was like, man, I need video testimonials. I had a ton of texts, like emails and Facebook comments and all that. So, I pulled up everyone who had ever subscribed, even if they had canceled. The most funny is one of the testimonials came from somebody that actually canceled because they… something happened and had to cancel and they’re like, “I’m coming back eventually, but here’s my testimonial.”
But, I sent this out and within 15 minutes I had four video testimonials. I’m like, there we go and I built the new sales page. So like, just… and these people are so hot right now. I’ll tell you what you should do. Here’s what you should do, on those live calls, do you do them on Zoom or do you do them like Facebook live?
Jennifer (33:57): Just Facebook live.
Do a special Zoom hangout. Okay? Send it to all of your members, put it on Facebook. Promote it for two or three days on Facebook, do a live and be like, we’re going to do a Zoom call. We’re going to do a Zoom call and make it where we can see… you want everybody to see each other’s faces. That’s how you’re presenting it. You know what I’m saying?
Jennifer (34:14): Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Then say, we’re going to talk about… tell then you want to get feedback on how to make the online better.
And what do you want to see in the future and that kind of thing.
Yes. So basically go through each person, right? Say 30 of your members show up, right? Just go through them all. Just sit there for a couple hours with them and say, hey, Theresa, how are you doing? It’s so good to see you. I miss… I can’t wait until we get to see each other in person again. Then have a series of questions, a series of prompts, okay? Just say, what do you love about all of the online classes? Then they’ll say, oh, I love that I get to do this at home in my pajamas, right? Or I love that I can do this… Interview them, interview them three or four… about three questions a piece, what do you love about it? Why are online classes so cool? Whatever, we can come up with the questions, we’ll talk about it.
But like a three question testimonial interview but the last question can be not part of the testimonial, it can be, hey, what would you like to see us do in our online classes to make them better for you or make them support you more or whatever? So you go talk to about 20 people, you get to connect with your community, right? You get to see each other’s faces, right? Because that’s going to help everybody right now. What you do then is you edit their answers, you take the questions out and you edit those snippets into testimonial videos. So you could have 30 people say how much they love it, you’ll get two or three minutes from each person. You can put together a 15 minute montage of testimonials for your sales page or just a couple of clips that you can throw on Instagram and use on your YouTube channel.
You could put one of those comments like, I love Thrive Wellness Online because I get to do it at home. You could throw that before your YouTube video and then you’ve got a testimonial, a YouTube video, a pitch, like every single video. It would take you two hours and you’d have 20 video testimonials that way. You know what I mean?
Yep. We’ve done a zoom one once, it was hilarious. We called it The Thrive Happy Hour and we had… I guess we had about 15 at one point and they got to meet our baby chickens. I brought baby chickens inside my house.
Do that again and hold the baby chickens while they’re interviewing and they’ll smile.
Yes. Those types of things, they make people feel like they know you more. It’s just like, if you’re watching this on video right now, our kid just ran through the background a few minutes ago.
Yeah. I don’t know if you saw that Jennifer. Did you see Anna Jo walk in the door? Yeah, I was like, she looked over at me… she got off camera, she looked over at me and goes and just ran out. I don’t know if she knew we were podcasting or not but quarantine life, we’ve got that quarantine life going on.
People just… they relate to you so much more and that makes them want to follow what you do and
share what you do and all those types of things.
Sometimes, we’re probably… when we recorded this, which I’m actually going to release this one pretty fast, so this is coming out this month, okay? But when this is all over, is uncertain. We don’t know if we’re going to be… nothing’s going to be normal for the next three months. I mean, even if they start rolling open things, right? Each State is going to have their own thing.
We are not going to flip a light switch and everything be back to normal.
You are not going to flip a light switch and everything be back to normal. You know what I mean?
Jennifer (37:21): Yeah.
Sometimes in your business there’s a… I don’t want to say a holding pattern because that sounds like you’re not doing anything but it’s like consolidating your gains, right? This is a wonderful time right now to build a massive amount of equity into your online business. Your YouTube channel is growing, double down on that and in three months when this is over pretty much, you’ll have two thousand, three thousand subscribers and when all this is over, your Facebook videos will be watched more and your Instagram lives and all that and like you’re building a base of audience now, that you’re going to be able to push. I would do as much lead capture as possible I think right in this moment and not a ton of selling. We always want to sell, you’re going to ask people to join but all these new YouTube subscribers, tell them to opt-in for a free yoga kit or something, a fitness kit or something like or you-
Or whatever opt-ins bonuses you have.
Whatever opt-in bonuses you’ve got. Do something on your website, do something on your Facebook lives. Give people more things for free or something like that or open one class a day to the public if they opt-in. You know what I mean? Like what we were talking off air about running some Facebook ads locally, that would probably maybe what I would do, I wouldn’t ask people necessarily to join, I don’t think. I would say, hey, we want to serve the Chattanooga community, so we’re going to open one free class a day and you do it at whatever your six o’clock class is or something, you know what I mean?
Or maybe your morning class. Start your day with Thrive Yoga and Wellness but they have to opt in to be able to get to that. So I don’t know if you would set up a free trial or not, I don’t know what you would do there. But you see what I’m saying? Get as many leads locally and everywhere as you can get and maybe you come out of this with a thousand emails, right? Then that thousand emails turns into 50 to a hundred members down the road, okay? But the attention you’re getting right now is going to be really powerful if you can turn it into an email list that you can follow up with in the future. Does that make sense?
Jennifer (39:25): Mm-hmm (affirmative).
I see you writing, she’s got head down, pencils moving. I am recording this Jennifer, you know that,
I do better, if there’s many senses into it as possible, I do better with memory.
Shane (39:38): Yes.
Yeah. I think with Zoom you can have the option to have them sign on and they have to put a name and a password.
Yes, and I’m pretty sure that… I don’t know if… I’m thinking Zoom connects. Zoom, my Zapier to Kajabi, where they’ll just go straight into your email list and then you can write a followup sequence to get them to join. That’s the path.
For your local people, you could even do some type of contest like, if you invite your friends to the free class, if they come and say that you recommended them, I’m going to give away a yoga mat or whatever.
Shane (40:08): Oh, that’s good.
There’s things that you can do right now where people are sitting in front of their computer all the time and just take advantage of that.
Here’s a great way to do prizes like that too to make it simpler. I don’t know if you sell equipment.
We have clothes and stuff.
Shane (40:30): Yeah. Yeah.
We’ve done some challenges and I’ve given away… actually we had a company donate some stuff to give away for a challenge.
Shane (40:37): Killer.
So, we’ve been doing that to the folks that are inside the group.
So what you could do is, say anyone who signs up for a free class you’re registered for a free yoga mat, okay? But here’s how you deliver that without having to mess with anything. So let’s say every week you do a drawing on the Sunday class or something or whatever, the Monday class, whatever it is. So you say, Eric Smith, you won the yoga mat this week and-
Or the $25 gift certificate for clothing or whatever it is.
Right. Present to win, right? But all you got to do is send them an email, go buy a $20 Amazon gift card, give them the gift card and then send them a yoga mat that you recommend from an Amazon. You see what I’m saying? That way you don’t have to actually physically deliver anything, you just email them a gift card and a yoga mat. If they spend it on something else it’s on them but you gave them the money to buy a free yoga mat. You see what I’m saying? But that 25 bucks that you could have spent on something else may get you 25, 30 leads, right? Because everybody wants to win the yoga mat or something like that.
Yeah and you can do it for anybody who shows up. I mean, there’s different ways that you could do
things but it’s just a really good time for incentives like that right now.
Yeah. Another thing that I would do too is, I haven’t told Jocelyn this, but I’ve been thinking about this.
Oh, my. Those are the scariest words I can hear you.
You’re ready? Jocelyn. Jocelyn, I have an idea. Look at you, just shaking her head at me like, oh God. All right. So one thing that I’ve been thinking about lately is Flip Your Life Live 2021, okay? So we are not doing Flip Your Life Live in 2020. We had already decided to make it every like the next year and take a year off this year and we were going to do some smaller events. One of my smaller events that I was having has been postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic so that was crazy. But I followed Jennifer’s lead and I turned it into an online mastermind and I’m going live with them every week for eight weeks, baby. That’s what I’m talking about and we’re still going to meet live whenever they let us actually travel.
But I’ve been thinking about Flip Your Life Live 2021 and Jocelyn and I, really wanted… we’ve talked about taking it a different direction. We want to make it bigger and have more people and maybe even make the price like a lot cheaper so that as many people can come as possible. I was thinking about this yesterday and I actually drew out a marketing plan for this and I want to stop focusing on what’s happening now and start thinking about the day when we’re all together again, when we get to run up and hug each other and we don’t have to worry about ending up in a hospital. Or, we get to go and celebrate and talk to each other and eat together and be in the same room together. I want to start thinking about that.
That’s the direction that I want to take our marketing for Flip Your Life Live 2021. I’m actually thinking about starting to promote it now in the next month or so and starting to say, hey, we can’t wait to see you again. This is going to happen and start telling them what’s going to happen at the event. You could do that right now with your yoga studio publicly. You can talk about how you are like… you need to call the newspaper and you need to say, you need to do a story on me, you know why? Because my yoga studio is still open. This is what I’m doing to survive the crisis and our yoga community is still around and you need to call the local news channel and you need to tell them like, hey, our community is strong and when we open again, we’re going to be having all these classes again and this is what it’s going to look like.
When we open again, we’re going to have a huge party for the entire block of all these people. We’re going to have a big fundraiser or something, a big yogathon to help all these people where the tornado ripped down their buildings all around us. When we open again, and that just submits that it is going to happen, it is going to happen and it focuses your community forward. So, if you would go and just stop feeling guilty and stop thinking about all these crazy things that have happened right now because they’ve happened, it’s over, right? You’ve survived it and now start looking toward the future and building your marketing around that hope and that togetherness, I think your membership could blow up not only locally, but globally as you do all these other things online. Okay?
I did a little bit of that in my weekly email today, a little bit of that. I did a GIF of Johnny from Sing, you guys have little kids so I know you guys have seen it the, I’m still standing.
Yeah. Yeah. That one.
I did a GIF of that and I was like, this is going to be the studio’s theme song for 2020. We’re still standing, we’re still here, we’re still strong, we’re volunteering out in the community tomorrow. We’re going to be even stronger when things come up. So I guess I’m doing baby steps of that.
Jocelyn (45:23): Yeah, absolutely.
But I like the idea of getting more people involved.
Yes, and ramp it up and you’re at the beginning of a movement and I think that might be what the missing belief is in your online business. I don’t think you realize how amazing you really are and we do, because we’ve met you and we’ve seen you and we know your spirit and your people do. As soon as you realize how big of a deal you really are, then your online membership is going to become a really, really big deal and we just want you to do that, okay?
Well listen, thank you so much. I know this is a hard conversation in some parts but it’s another reason we love our community so much because every member is just so transparent and they’re so giving and open to come tell their stories of failures, of successes, of standing still and plateaus and like this was an epic, epic story of things that could crush a normal person or a normal business and they did not crush you. We’re just thankful that you came on and told everybody that today. It was awesome.
Thank you for having me and allowing me to share my story.
Jocelyn (46:36): Absolutely.
All right guys, that wraps up our interview with the amazing and inspiring Jennifer Dixon of thriveyogaandwellness.com. Look, if you’re trapped at home right now during this outbreak and you’re missing your yoga studio and they’re not having virtual classes and you can’t find a good YouTube video, you need to go to thriveyogaandwellness.com and check out all of the virtual offerings. What’d she say? She has 30 classes a week, right now?
Yeah, that’s a lot.
That’s every time slot of the day. These are live classes.
Jocelyn (47:08): Different types of yoga.
Different types of yoga and we just highly want to recommend that we are not affiliates, we are not business partners with Jennifer, we just know that she is amazing and incredibly inspiring and let me tell you something, she is going to work you out. They have some amazing classes over there. So check out thriveyogaandwellness.com. Check out her membership, go join her membership and check out everything that she has to offer. Man, what an amazing, inspiring story of how an online business saved her brick and mortar business.
So, imagine if every small business owner in America who was closed right now had a membership. What if every brick and mortar mom-and-pop in the country and the world had 50 people paying them 50 bucks a month, they would be surviving this time, their business wouldn’t be shutting down. I read a study that is at 43% of businesses may… believe they may close after all this is over but they wouldn’t if they would expand their reach out with a membership that was broadcast on the internet. So just awesome stuff. Check it out again, thriveyogaandwellness.com.
All right, we want to go into our can’t miss moment section here on the podcast and ours is not a tornado raging through, but it’s very close to it. My can’t miss moment from this week is actually having two houses. This is definitely not something that we could have done back in our old jobs as school teachers in Southeast Kentucky because we would not have been able to afford more than one house. But we actually do have two houses. Our old house, where we used to live, it’s actually… we call it our freedom house because we sold our house to lower our bills when we first started our online business so that we could quit our jobs faster.
We lived there for many years. It’s a wonderful, cozy little house, three bedroom, two bath, got a nice fenced in backyard. That’s where we lived for the first few years of our online business. Then we upgraded when our business really took off here. We’ve got a… where we live now, but the same tornadoes and stuff that went through Chattanooga, all that wind in the Southeast came through here and we live right beside a 10 acre lake and the wind is stronger right by the water. I was playing Xbox the other day with my brother, he lives up in Cincinnati. We haven’t seen each other in months because of the quarantine and we were playing Xbox and I… my lights flickered and I said, “Oh no, my power is about to go out.”
This was a Sunday night.
This was Sunday night and everything went out, the power shut down and I heard this awful roar outside. I ran to the window and I… we have this huge like eight person table outside and it probably-
Jocelyn (49:41): It’s an iron table.
It’s made out of cast iron, it probably weighs 600 pounds with a hundred pound, what is it? A 50 pound base on the umbrella?
Jocelyn (49:47): Yeah. Yeah.
Huge. It’s just ridiculous. I look over the whole thing, lifts off the ground and flies across the deck and I’m like, how are we going to get that out of lake was the first thing I thought. Then I thought, oh no, tornado. I ran to the closet, “Get down here, get in the closet.” The kids are crying and screaming and we’re clearing out this closet to hide and we sat there for about an hour and just wind roaring and it finally died down and it just destroyed our backyard, destroyed everything.
But the power went out and we slept there Sunday night and we got up in the morning and they basically told us we ain’t know when power was going to be back on. So luckily we use the old house as our studio, as our office, where we record our podcast, where we get work done and sometimes we just take the kids over there and the dogs, they can play on the backyard. We’ve got a trampoline for the kids over there, but we moved basically back in there. I went to Walmart and bought four air mattresses so we each had our own air mattress and we all just camped out with the dogs and we had internet and we had lights and that was what we were looking for. So that’s definitely my can’t miss moment is that we had… because of the online business, because of the success we’ve had, we got to have internet for a couple days and a refrigerator. We lost… how much money in food do you think we lost?
Jocelyn (50:59): Probably hundreds.
Like hundreds of dollars in food. It was absolutely ridiculous so that’s my can’t miss moment this week.
You’ve got anything else?
I would say that that’s probably mine as well. Just having a place to go and having a place to just be warm. It was really cold this week and I was just really thankful as we were in the house that we had another place to go and that we were nice and warm and everyone was taken care of.
That’s really what it’s about when you have your online business, when you have freedom guys, is to have the resources to make life a little easier and have it a little bit stronger chance of overcoming all of those challenges. We want you to be able to have more can’t miss moments of your own. We want you to have that stability, that security, that backstop that Jennifer had that saved her brick and mortar business and that comes from having an online membership.
When you have a hundred people paying you $50 a month, spread out all over the world, you have so much less risk of anything happening to your business. You have $5,000 a month, $60,000 a year, you have that freedom. We would love to help you start an online membership of your own and we do that over at flippedlifestyle.com. You can go over there and you can check out all of the amazing resources we have to help you come up with an idea, create your membership, and go out and find members.
In fact, we offer a 30 day free trial to Flipped Lifestyle Podcast. Listeners, you can start your free trial in the Flip Your Life Community today over at flippedlifestyle.com/free. All right guys, before we go, we like to end every one of the Flipped Lifestyle Podcast with a Bible verse. Jocelyn and I get a lot of our motivation and inspiration from a Bible verse and Jennifer’s story made me think of one of my favorite Bible verses today. In Ecclesiastes chapter 11 verse two and verse six, the Bible says, “Invest in seven ventures, yes, in eight, you do not know what disaster may come upon the land. Sow your seed in the morning and at evening let your hands not be idle, for you do not know which seed will succeed, whether this or that, whether both or whether both would do equally well.”
So guys, Jennifer’s story is just a great example of you don’t know what’s going to happen so you got to be prepared now. The best time to start a membership was probably a year ago, but guess what? The next best time is right now, today because you don’t know what tomorrow is going to hold and whether you have a brick and mortar business, you have a job, start a side hustle, start a micro membership, start a subscription side hustle so that you can spread that out. You don’t know what is going to be successful. You don’t know what is going to help you make it through the next storm, and we would love to help you do that. So until next time, get out there, take action, and do whatever it takes to flip your life. We’ll see you then.
Jocelyn (53:47): Bye.
I was trying to show you my product placement.
Oh, look at that, that’s a Flip Lifestyle mug. Where is mine? Hold on, hold on, wait for it.
Jennifer (54:05): I was like-
Hold on, wait a minute, virtual toast. Bring it in, cheers.
Jennifer (54:10): Cheers.
Shane (54:10): Cheers.